nep-hpe New Economics Papers
on History and Philosophy of Economics
Issue of 2009‒04‒25
eight papers chosen by
Erik Thomson
University of Manitoba

  1. François Perroux, a precursor of the current analyses of power By René Sandretto
  2. Listen Up Economists,Why Might History Matter for Development Policy? By Ravi Kanbur
  3. Journal rankings in economics: handle with care By Howard J. Wall
  4. Ranking Economics Departments in Terms of Residual Productivity: New Zealand Economics Departments, 2000-2006 By David L. Anderson; John Tresler
  5. Doves and hawks in economics revisited [An evolutionary quantum game theory-based analysis of financial crises] By Hanauske, Matthias; Kunz, Jennifer; Bernius, Steffen; König, Wolfgang
  6. Chaos in Economics and Finance By Dominique Guegan
  7. Double-Blind in Light of Internet – Note on Review Processes By Holm, Håkan J.
  8. Homo Æqualis: A Cross-Society Experimental Analysis of Three Bargaining Games By Abigail Barr; Chris Wallace; Jean Ensminger; Juan Camilo Cárdenas

  1. By: René Sandretto (University of Lyon, Lyon, F-69003, France; CNRS, UMR 5824, GATE, Ecully, F-69130, France; ENS LSH, Lyon, F-69007, France)
    Abstract: Despite its important contributions to economic thought, namely in the field of spatial economics and economics of development, François Perroux, one of the most important French economists of the 20st century, remains today poorly appreciated and frequently unrecognized. This paper tends to show how unfair is this deficit of recognition. We underline Perroux’s illuminating views on asymmetry, domination and power which can be considered as a prefiguration and – to some extent – as a generalization of works made in this field half a century later, for example the American realist and neo-realist approaches of power (namely the concepts of hard and soft power) or by Susan Strange (with his concept of structural power).
    Keywords: Asymmetry, power, domination, influence, coercion
    JEL: B19 B4 B5
    Date: 2009
  2. By: Ravi Kanbur
    Abstract: History matters, and it matters in important and interesting ways for policy today. But it is not just actual events in the past. It is how they are recorded, interpreted, and the interpretation transmitted, that matters. This is what determines the mental makeup, the preferences in economists’ terminology, of agents in the economy. That is the causal mechanism. It is the embedding of the past in the present’s perception of policy that is the transmission mechanism linking history to today’s development policy.
    Keywords: History, Economics, development policy, historical events, economic agents,
    Date: 2009
  3. By: Howard J. Wall
    Abstract: Nearly all journal rankings in economics use some weighted average of citations to calculate a journal's impact. These rankings are often used, formally or informally, to help assess the publication success of individual economists or institutions. Although ranking methods and opinions are legion, scant attention has been paid to the usefulness of any ranking as representative of the many articles published in a journal. First, because the distributions of citations across articles within a journal are seriously skewed, and the skewness differs across journals, the appropriate measure of central tendency is the median rather than the mean. Second, large shares of articles in the highest-ranked journals are cited less frequently than typical articles in much-lower-ranked journals. Finally, a ranking that uses the h-index is very similar to one that uses total citations, making it less than ideal for assessing the typical impact of articles within a journal.
    Keywords: Economics
    Date: 2009
  4. By: David L. Anderson (Queen's University); John Tresler (University of Waikato)
    Abstract: This paper considers a new approach for ranking the research productivity of academic departments. Our approach provides rankings in terms of residual research output after controlling for the key characteristics of each department’s academic staff. More specifically, we estimate residual research output rankings for all of New Zealand’s economics departments based on their publication performance over the 2000 to 2006 period. We do so after taking into account the following characteristics of each department’s academic staff: gender, experience, seniority, academic credentials, and academic rank. The paper concludes with a comparison of rankings generated by the residual research approach with those generated by traditional approaches to research rankings.
    Keywords: economics departments; university rankings; research output; economics research
    JEL: A19 C81 J24
    Date: 2009–03–31
  5. By: Hanauske, Matthias; Kunz, Jennifer; Bernius, Steffen; König, Wolfgang
    Abstract: The last financial and economic crisis demonstrated the dysfunctional long-term effects of aggressive behaviour in financial markets. Yet, evolutionary game theory predicts that under the condition of strategic dependence a certain degree of aggressive behaviour remains within a given population of agents. However, as the consequences of the financial crisis exhibit, it would be desirable to change the 'rules of the game' in a way that prevents the occurrence of any aggressive behaviour and thereby also the danger of market crashes. The paper picks up this aspect. Through the extension of the in literature well-known Hawk-Dove game by a quantum approach, we can show that dependent on entanglement, also evolutionary stable strategies can emerge, which are not predicted by classical evolutionary game theory and where the total economic population uses a non aggressive quantum strategy.
    Keywords: Evolutionary game theory; financial crisis; hawk-dove game; quantum game theory
    JEL: D53 A13 C02 C70 Z13 C73
    Date: 2009–04–14
  6. By: Dominique Guegan (CES - Centre d'économie de la Sorbonne - CNRS : UMR8174 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - Paris I, EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris)
    Abstract: This paper focuses on the use of dynamical chaotic systems in Economics and Finance. In these fields, researchers employ different methods from those taken by mathematicians and physicists. We discuss this point. Then, we present statistical tools and problems which are innovative and can be useful in practice to detect the existence of chaotic behavior inside real data sets.
    Keywords: Chaos ; Deterministic dynamical system ; Economics ; Estimation theory ; Finance ; Forecasting
    Date: 2009
  7. By: Holm, Håkan J. (Department of Economics, Lund University)
    Abstract: This paper analyses the credibility of author anonymity provided by double-blind review processes. It is argued that authors have strong incentives to disseminate information about their papers before publication. A sample from two economics journals, both using double-blind review processes provides evidence that author revealing information of most accepted papers is available on the Internet before the review processes are finished. The difficulty and cost of identifying authors of anonymized unpublished manuscripts are examined in an experiment where subjects are paid according to their identification performance. The vast majority of authors can be identified within 60 seconds.
    Keywords: Review Process; Scientific Publication; Experiment
    JEL: C91 D80 O30
    Date: 2009–04–19
  8. By: Abigail Barr; Chris Wallace; Jean Ensminger; Juan Camilo Cárdenas
    Abstract: Data from three bargaining games—the Dictator Game, the Ultimatum Game, and the Third-Party Punishment Game—played in 15 societies are presented. The societies range from US undergraduates to Amazonian, Arctic, and African hunter-gatherers. Behaviour within the games varies markedly across societies. The paper investigates whether this behavioural diversity can be explained solely by variations in inequality aversion. Combining a single parameter utility function with the notion of subgame perfection generates a number of testable predictions. While most of these are supported, there are some telling divergences between theory and data: uncertainty and preferences relating to acts of vengeance may have influenced play in the Ultimatum and Third- Party Punishment Games; and a few subjects used the games as an opportunity to engage in costly signalling.
    Date: 2009–03–05

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